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News/Business. Latest on the day's top news stories with a focus on global news, trends and destinations. New.

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Texas 10, Us 6, Cambodia 5, America 4, Garth 3, Virginia 3, Phnom Penh 2, United States 2, Randi Kaye 2, Davis 2, Ringo Starr 2, Emily Schmidt 2, Dr. Sanjay Gupta 2, Maryland 2, Cnn Newsroom 1, The Transportation System 1, Unitedhealthcare Insurance Company 1, University Of Phoenix 1, At&t 1, Ringo 1,
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  CNN    CNN Newsroom    News/Business. Latest on the day's top news stories  
   with a focus on global news, trends and destinations. New.  

    July 7, 2012
    1:00 - 1:30pm PDT  

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newsroom. you're in the cnn newsroom. i'm gary tuchman in for frederica whitfield. nine days and counting. a searing heat wave affecting a huge section of the united states is once again creating dangerous conditions from the midwest to the eastern seaboard. temperatures so high they are literally causing roads to buckle. in wisconsin, this warped road actually sent an suv flying into the air. that is a true picture. that is not made up. the heat is especially dangerous for people who don't have power and that is the situation facing hundreds of thousands of people who lost electricity during a major storm one week ago. and we have reporters covering all angles of this story. let's start now with meteorologist alexandra steele in the cnn weather center. how hot is it around the country today? >> i'll give you the two hot spots thus far. what do you think st. louis hit so far, gary? >> st. louis has hit, i can see
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it so i can cheat. 106 degrees. >> well, that was actually the forecast. >> oh, i see. i would say 107 degrees. >> 106. you were right the first time. >> okay. >> and rockford, illinois hit 105. those were all last hour. that was kind of the apex of the heat. the numbers are coming down. both records for the day. incredible heat. kansas city 103. these were the expectations for highs. even washington at 103. it was feeling like 107 last hour. so the heat is certainly on but there is relief in sight. it is coming at a price. i'll show you what that price is. there's the cold front or cool front, cooler air behind it. chicago at 100 yesterday. 82 degrees by tomorrow. so certainly nice, needed relief there. 101 tomorrow in washington but then we'll continue to see this cooling trend from sunday into monday and thus far as even heading into tuesday things cooling off more. chicago down to 81. who would have thought 89 degrees in st. louis would be like cool relief, right? 84 in washington. 89 in columbus.
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but, again, it is coming at a price and that price, showers and thunderstorms, severe thunderstorm watch boxes, posted. you can see including new york city and pittsburgh and also north of philadelphia. washington, d.c. has the threat as well. and this is what we're seeing. watch this kind of get its act together right here. this is current radar so the potential today, gary, will be for some severe thunderstorms but it's really with the wind. we will see some wind damage by the end of today with this. we will see the cool relief. >> by next weekend you expect it to be more pleasant. >> absolutely. more or less average on the east coast but another heat wave and dome of high pressure is brewing in the west that will make its way eastward. out of the woods for now but bank on a steamy summer. >> alexandra, thank you and nice seeing you today. >> sure. >> well, cooler temperatures ahead as you just heard. that's good news for the people suffering through an entire week of triple digit temperatures with no air conditioning.
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cnn's emily schmidt joins us live from virginia. the entire d.c. area, maryland, virginia, the district extremely hard hit by these storms. how are people coping right now? >> you know, people are still talking about where were you when your power went back on and the sad reality is for thousands of people in this area they still detainee have an answer to that. even here in springfield, virginia where the power came back on july 3rd here is one reason why. look at this extending across someone's front yard to the front door. today a heat record is on the line and with so many days in this heat there is just no way to avoid it. take, for example, the world war ii memorial in washington. a lot of families had planned that trip for months, so regardless of the temperature tourists grabbed their water bottles. they put on light clothing. they tried to think of cooler times. >> it's been over a week. actually, i have never been so excited for 80-degree weather. this has been tough and we try to find the air conditioning as,
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you know, when we can, and stay in the shade. >> and it's more than just discomfort that comes into play. certainly this weather has brought with it some real dangers. metro, the transportation system that is in the washington, d.c. area, is blaming a train derailment of three cars that happened during rush hour yesterday on the heat. the state of maryland is also now reporting nine deaths they blame on the heat that occurred just since july 2nd. >> i imagine you're encountering a lot of people who are plenty peeved, right? >> yeah. they really are. and they're afraid it could happen again. people afraid to fill up their freezers because they hear there could be another storm on the way. they don't necessarily trust the utility companies. at this point they're afraid of going through this in a round two. >> emily schmidt, thank you very much for joining us. we appreciate it. an historic vote taking place in the nation of libya today. the country's first free election since the downfall of the gadhafi regime. voters are electing a national assembly responsible for
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appointing a transitional government. polls closed about two hours ago. voter turnout much heavier than expected. in spain, the annual running of the bulls is on. six runners including a 73-year-old man were hurt on the first day. we hear these stories every year. unusual to hear about a man at that age being hurt. not critically, we understand. the races will be held for eight straight days. they end on bastille day, july 14th. inmates at a texas prison say they are constitutionally protected from the heat, and they're going to court. our legal guys take on the case. and a mystery disease has killed more than 60 children in cambodia. health investigators are trying to figure out exactly what is going on. for business. [ beeping ] in here, data knows what to do. because the network finds it and tailors it across all the right points, automating all the right actions, to bring all the right results. [ whirring and beeping ]
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my name is james craig, i am committed to making a difference, and i am a phoenix. visit phoenix.edu to find the program that's right for you. enroll now. the legal guys are here. we'll look at the case of the over heated prisoners in texas. avery, what is your take? >> coddling criminals with air conditioning or cruel and unusual punishment? we've gotd the answ the answers and more. >> richard? what do you have to say? >> gary, a few possible casualties heat related will not rise to the level of a constitutional violation for the tough texas prison system. >> back with the legal guys in 90 seconds. our abundant natural gas is already saving us money, producing cleaner electricity, putting us to work here in america and supporting wind and solar.
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isn't cruel and unusual punishment -- is it cruel and unusual punishment to deny air conditioning to prisoners during the summer or is discomfort what convicted prisoners deserve? in one south prison a lawsuit says the indoor temperature exceeded 120 degrees fahrenheit for ten days. last summer prisoners died at other prisons due to heat related causes and a lawsuit has been filed in one of those deaths. let's bring in avery friedman, civil rights attorney and law professor in cleveland and richard herman new york defense attorney and law professor joining us from miami. thank you very much for joining us. this is a very provocative
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topic. inmates and advocates are saying over heated conditions violate the eighth amendment's prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment. avery, what's your take on that? >> yeah. i think this week may answer the question coming up shortly. there was a three judge federal appeals panel, which rejected the question of foreseeability, negligence. but the court seemed to be very concerned about this question. how many more people have to die? that was the statement by one of the federal appeals judges before we take a look at doing something about the 21 of the 111 state prisons in texas. i think the three judge panel is going to say, gary, it is cruel and unusual punishment. 126 degrees. 143 degrees. it's time to do something about that. >> richard, prison officials accused of not providing fans, ventilation, water, refusing to follow local and national prison standards. texas law i understand requires counties to maintain temperatures between 65 and 85
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degrees, but this is what's interesting. the law does not apply to state prisons, right? >> it does not apply to state prisons, gary. you are exactly right. i don't think the circuit court is going to come down as hard as avery thinks. i think they may make some remedial suggestions to provide fans and cups but this is texas. don't mess with texas. a very, very tough senting state. i don't know what percentage of people in texas have fully air conditioned homes. these individuals are incarcerated. there's a purpose for incarceration. deterrence, protect the public. should be a just punishment. i understand that. but whether it really rises to the level, this gentleman was 345 pounds. his body temperature was 109 degrees, gary, so the conditions are deplorable. >> i want to read to you what the state of texas is saying. steps are taken to address heat, outside activity restricted, frequent water breaks provided,
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allow additional showers, permit inmates to wear shorts. fans and blowers used. some people might argue there are millions of people in the united states who don't have air conditioning in their homes why should inmates? >> nothing to do with it, gary. the issue isn't whether or not we've made prisoners comfortable. that's not the issue. the issue is whether or not the extreme temperatures of 120, 130, 140 degrees constitute cruel and unusual punishment. i think it does. i think there are ways of addressing it and that's why the three-judge panel is going to order texas to make some changes in those 21 prisons. >> okay. we move on now to another topic. a man sentenced to 162 years in prison with no parole for an armed robbery spree that started when he was 18. this was his first offense. the u.s. supreme court ruled last week that a state cannot mandate a life sentence without parole for juveniles convicted of murder. is there a similar argument in this case, richard? >> well, gary, the judge, the
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sentencing judge clearly has discretion here. he's not bound by the mandatory minimum requirements. however, this judge had his hump up against this defendant here and stacked the sentences, which led to this incredible sentence. for a first-time offender to get this sentence, you know, the rules in federal court especially are the early bird gets the worm. all the other coconspirator, codefendants with him ran in with their attorneys. they won cut deals because their lawyers advised them they were facing a prison sentence like this. however, this gentleman decided, his attorney advised i guess not to go in and make a deal. incredibly stupid move. and look at the sentence he's got. there is no way he is going to get out. he is going to have to become a rat to get out. he may not have any information to provide the government. and he will die in prison. >> avery, the prosecutor in the case says davis was violent, fired shots, brandished a gun, threatened to kill at least one man and during the trial he was
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described as learning disabled bipolar and five other accomplices cut plea deals and were given sentences from 9 to 22 years. davis says he was never offered a plea deal. is this fair that a guy like this faces all his entire natural life in prison is what the effect of this will be? >> well, the argument being made in the court of appeals is whether or not a 162-year sentence constitutes an eighth amendment violation, cruel and unusual. gary, this isn't a first offender. this is a first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, and seventh offender with a gun shooting at people. five witnesses testified against him. i don't think in a million years that you'll ever see a federal appeals court conclude that this constitutes cruel, unusual punishment. sorry that he did it once or three times or six times or seven times. he did it, unfortunately, there are sentencing rules which are going to come under review by congress but absent
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congressional action to modify things which i don't think is realistic, that sentence is going to stand. >> gary, i tell you, i have personal, first-hand experience with the 11th circuit in atlanta on appeals where they upheld an 845-year prison term on a white collar insurance fraud. 845 on a white collar insurance fraud. upheld by the 11th circuit. there is no chance they're going to overturn this one. >> the moral of the story -- >> i agree -- crime does not pay, right? >> that's right. >> the moral of the story is don't shoot people and try it seven times. i think that's what this case is about. it's pretty easy. >> the second moral to the story. avery and richard, thank you. the legal guys are on top of their game. watch more every saturday at noon eastern time right here on cnn. a mysterious disease is killing dozens of children. world health investigators want to know what it is and why it
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kills so quickly. we're on the story in cambodia. tomorrow dr. sanjay gupta introduces us to a woman hoping to inspire the next generation of innovators on his show "the next list" dr. gupta profiles the founder of something called little bits. it's sort of like the high tech version of lego blocks. i'm an engineer and the founder of little bits. these are little bits. a little bits is a system of electronic modules that snap together with magnets to teach kids about electronics and science and technology. one of my favorite things is seeing the first time people interact with little bits. they take their two pieces, they snap the two pieces together and a light comes on and then suddenly their face lights up. suddenly, you feel like a whole world of imagination opened up to them and they're able to imagine what's possible.
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>> now that is cool. tune in tomorrow to watch the next list or set your dvr for 2:00 p.m. eastern time. a route map shows you where we go. but not how we get there. because in this business, there are no straight lines. only the twists and turns of an unpredictable industry. so the eighty-thousand employees at delta... must anticipate the unexpected. and never let the rules overrule common sense. this is how we tame the unwieldiness of air travel, until it's not just lines you see... it's the world. i have to know the weather patterns. i upgraded to the new sprint direct connect. so i can get three times the coverage. [ chirp ] [ manager 2 ] it's like working in a giant sandbox
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with all these huge toys. and with the fastest push-to-talk... i can keep track of them all. [ chirp ] [ chirp ] [ male announcer ] upgrade to the new "done." with access to the fastest push-to-talk and three times the coverage. now when you buy one kyocera duracore rugged phone, for $49.99, you'll get four free. visit a sprint store, or call 855-878-4biz. [ chirp ] a mystery illness is killing children in cambodia. at least 61 kids have died. many of them under 3 years old. the symptoms include respiratory problems and a swelling of the brain. we'll go to phnom penh for details about the outbreak. >> reporter: when we went down
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to the hospital there were lines of people standing outside but many of them were there for other reasons such as the denge fever or the children for example had some respiratory problems. they were not for the most part aware of this new syndrome that seems to be out there that is particularly deadly and that's concerning to those health organizations who are trying to get the word out that if your child has, for example, fever, that if your child has difficulty breathing or near logical problems, drowsiness, unable to respond, that the child is brought to the hospital immediately. the difficulty here is the world health organization and the ministries of health here in cambodia just do not know exactly what they're dealing with. they have determined that this is not sars and this is not bird flu but this is some sort of deadly syndrome that is going around and they're trying to figure out exactly how dangerous it is and how it spreads.
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>> it is difficult to assess how dangerous it is if we don't know what we're dealing with and this is the focus of our investigation. get to know what we are dealing with and then we'll be able to take the appropriate measures. >> reporter: so you hear there again that the world health organization and the ministries of health here just don't know exactly what this is. this might be, for example, a combination of different illnesses that has proven to be quite deadly. what they're trying to do's disseminate information through television and radio, any way they can, first to the health providers, which has been relatively easy, but then also to the people. of the people we spoke with who were standing in line outside the hospital a lot of them had just never heard of this. there were a few that had whose children had fever. that's why they brought them to the hospital. this is just a very serious situation, one that a lot of parents would be concerned about as you might imagine especially
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those parents who have children under the age of 3. those are the groups of people that are dying from this disease and dying very rapidly. sara sidner, phnom penh, cambodia. >> thank you very much, sara. right now in the united states gay men cannot donate blood. is now the time to lift that ban? you'll hear from a congressman who wants to change the rules. e to the west, the greatest empires. then, some said, we lost our edge. well today, there's a new new york state. one that's working to attract businesses and create jobs. a place where innovation meets determination... and businesses lead the world. the new new york works for business. find out how it can work for yours at thenewny.com.
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do you give blood? sure it's not much fun with that needle and all but it is a pretty important thing to do if you can. almost all of us will need donated blood at one time or another. donations are almost always needed. but there is a group not allowed to donate blood despite the shortfall. gay men. some people say it's time for that to change. randi kaye talked about it earlier with two guests earlier today. >> the technology has changed so dramatically in blood screening in the last 27 years and we know so much more about risky behavior. remember that what we're proposing is a nuance change to this ban so gay men are allowed to give donations. this is also supported by the american medical association and, by the way, the blood
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banks. the blood banks, themselves, have said, this lifetime ban is medically unwarranted. >> did this ban at one point make sense? >> it did at one time way back at the beginning of the aids epidemic. we really had a terrible impact on people with hemophilia who rely on blood products every day. their population got decimated by aids, just a kind of holocaust among that group. we didn't have good, reliable tests at that time. in fact, we didn't even know what we were looking for at the start of the aids epidemic but it doesn't make much sense today because as the congressman said we have very, very good testing now, saying that you can't donate, if you've had male to male sex since 1977 doesn't make a lot of sense today. did then doesn't now. >> the department of health and human services decided recently to study a possible change in
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donation procedures. southern california is now home to one of america's greatest battle ships, the u.s.s. iowa, opened to the public today as a floating museum. the vessel was built in 1940, 72 years ago, and served the country for more than a half century. earlier in the week sailors who served on the iowa gathered at the port of los angeles to welcome the vessel to its new home. serena williams is a grand slam winner again. she pulled off her fifth wimbledon singles title today after a hard fought battle with poland's player. this is her 14th grand slam crown and her fifth wimbledon title gives her the same number of wimbledon wins as her sister venus. this was the first ever grand slam final for radwanska. i'm dr. sanjay gupta. coming up a radical new treatment for depression. looks like a pacemaker and has two wires that are inserted directly into the brain. on the outside your doctor literally flips a switch. battery powered brains ahead on sgmd. stick around. check it out.
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try capzasin-hp. it penetrates deep to block pain signals for hours of relief. capzasin-hp. take the pain out of arthritis. this might make you feel a little old today. ringo starr turned 72 years old and celebrated today in nashville. ♪ happy birthday to you. happy birthday to you ♪ >> ringo asked fans to wish the world peace and love as he has on his last two birthdays. randi kaye talked with ringo starr this morning and asked him about his day with the fab four. >> they were incredibly, you know, exciting and important days for me and the music we made is still important. you know, the kids are still livingou